Rivoli has long been known as one of Toronto’s premier multi-level venues, bars, clubs and restaurants that attracts international acts.
Adele played her first Canadian show and Blue Rodeo played their first show ever here, and it’s been known to host such well-known performers as Iggy Pop, Dave Grohl and Kids in the Hall. It’s topped by their own billiards hall, one of the best in Toronto.
This place had the same owners for 34 years until friends who’d been working there for years Jenna Wood, Jessica McHardy and Sarah Henning took over, redoing all the seating, floors and bar.
The main floor is roughly split into two halves. The vibe is casual overall, but there’s a more complete full-service dining area on one side and a more lounge-y bar area on the other.
When the weather is warm the patio facing the busy sidewalk is super popular.
Past this latter side is the back room venue space where all performances take place. Take note, there’s a $20 minimum when it comes to using debit or credit back here.
Wookie Balls ($8) are a Rivoli classic, basically a deep fried sticky rice ball coated in black and white sesame seeds and served with a sweet chili sauce. They’re salty and stick to your ribs for such a small quick snack, perfect for laying a foundation for some drinks.
The pad thai ($15) is another mainstay that isn’t going anywhere, a pretty ketchup-y, greasy version of the favourite but like the Wookie Balls it does the trick, providing a quickly crushable and reasonably taste bar meal. The standard version here comes with the chicken and shrimp, but of course you can make it vegetarian.
Signature cocktails ($12) are Toronto all the way, with names like Champagne Papi (cognac, grapefruit cordial, sparkling), Old York Fashioned (with blackberry whisky), Bellwoods Sangria, Sex on Cherry Beach and the Jose Blue Jay (tequila, blue curacao, hibiscus).
Toronto Island Iced Tea combines green tea vodka, gin, tequila, rum, Cointreau, lemon and ginger beer for an appropriately boozy, summer-y and slightly spicy take on the iconic cocktail.
On weekdays mains are served until 11 with snacks until midnight, and on weekends mains are available til midnight and snacks are served until 1 a.m. There’s open WiFi, a few TVs in the bar area and music events aren’t all that happens here.
Queer and Present Danger, Canada’s Premiere LGBTQ+ Comedy Showcase AND Amsterdam Brewery Proudly Present(s) :
The Up and Comers 10
Creator and Producer of QAPD, Chanty Marostica (Juno Nominee, Canadian Comedy Award Winner, Top Comic Winner 2018) presents a very special showcase that puts the spotlight on emerging talents in the community and features ALL Up and Coming Queer Acts!!!
COURTNEY GILMOUR'S DREAM LEG FUNDRAISER: MC Courtney Gilmour with
Arthur Simeon, Chris Robinson, DeAnne Smith, Nigel Grinstead, Jackie Pirico and Mike WIlmot. Proceeds go toward a new prosthetic leg for JFL Homegrown Comic Winner Courtney Gilmour.
International Asian comedy icon Ron Josol (Showtime, Just For Laughs) stars in RICE - Asian Comedy Showcase at the historic Rivoli.
Featuring Vong Show (MTV, Logo Network, Comedy Cares) and hosted by Leonard Chan (Just For Laughs, Winnipeg Comedy Festival). Special guest performances from an all-star lineup of Canada's finest Asian comedians.
GLENN SUMI (NOW MAGAZINE STAGE CRITIC):
The summer winds are rolling in, and The Be Sharps, the most cromulent band in the world, are ready to hit the Rivoli stage for a set of your favourite songs from The Simpsons!
Joining them will be the brass band video game tribute The Square Boys, and 90s alt-rock tribute squad GEN-X. Opening the show will be live-looper Jack Moves with a special tribute set.
Advance Tickets (...